Light & Shadows of Chalandor Book of Shadows
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Title: Story of the Season
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Rank:Diamond Member

Score: 5631
Posts: 5631
From: USA
Registered: 11/21/2008

(Date Posted:02/19/2009 06:16 AM)
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Niall and Finnola had been joined 6 moons earlier and now her belly swelled with a new life. As Finnola cradled her wiggling belly, Niall stoked the flames in the hearth against the encroaching cold and advancing darkness.
He was concerned. He had been watching the sun closely, not only was it not awake as long as it had been since their joining, it had moved slowly downward in the sky, His concern was that this time, it would dissappear for good. This had happened every year, but this year the cold was very bitter and the threat of the sun dying was more real.
He gazed at Finnola and the affection she glowed with toward their unborn child as she muttered lullabyes when a harsh picture of them all frozen solid in the dark flashed horridly across his fears.
Niall rose and bundled himself in furs and strapped them tightly around him. "I need to speak to the Wise One, I will return shortly."
Finnola nodded and asked him to be careful as she stirred the stew brewing over the fire, bracing herself against the blast of cold air as he opened the door.
The village was small, only twenty or so huts gathered together closely, the Wise one's hut in the center was easy to find in the cold dark. Niall knocked on the door.
"Enter!" replied a strong voice.
Niall entered quickly to keep as much warmth as there was, inside.
"Bless all in this house" Niall offered.
"And all its roof shelters!" replied a graying woman wrapped in shawls sitting by her fire, "Come, sit! What brings you to my fire Niall?"
"Wise One, this winter has been so long, the cold so bitter, I watch my child grow in Finnola's belly, and wonder if I shall see his face.... Will the Sun return this time?"
The wise one stared into the flames. After a time she looked into Nialls eyes.
She asked him, "What reason does the Sun have to return?"
Niall was stunned. He could only think of reasons why HE would want the Sun to return, but no reasons the Sun would.
"What can I do?" he asked with trepidation knowing that in dealing with gods, a sacrifice is usually asked in return for favors.
"Summon the other villagers into the main hall tomorrow and we will see what we can do."
The next day the Sun came up even later, Niall watched it rise low in the southern sky with a grim look on his face.
He had gone from hut to hut on his way home the night before announcing the Wise One's summon and they all had gathered in the Main Hall awaiting the Wise One.
She arrived garbed in her official robes, and spoke in a abnormally strong voice.
"Beloved Children! I have heard your fears and dread. I have consulted  the Divine Ones and asked their council.
LIFE is the spark of the Divine and celebration of life fuels it's strength.
Fear and foreboding are the waters that extinguish the strength on LIFE.
Tonight we will gather our strength and love of life together it ignite a fire of life and love so mighty the Sun will be drawn to it as a moth to a flame and return to us with it's warm and life giving light once again!
Go now to your homes and  look closely at all the things you have that would be lost if the Sun does NOT return. Bring whatever gift you can offer to the Sun to catch his attention. Bring any herbs or symbols of everlasting life! Bring food and wine and wear your best garments! Bring candles and wood to burn throughout the night!
Do all these things that this night will end the long cold nights, and bring the Sun back to us!"
The villagers hurried to prepare for that night's feast making.
Niall and Torloch, Giolla and Maol brought a large log, the length a man is tall and it's girth equal to 3 grown men to the main Halls hearth.
The Wise One annointed it with her most exotic and costly oils, the women of the village adorned it with precious baubles, and spices tied in bundles with bright colored strings and ribbons.
The children brought pinecones and evergreen boughs and kindling aplenty. All things the Wise One attached to the lhuge log.
The maidens of the village cooked, stewed, baked, washed, braided, and primped.
In the hustle and the bustle the gloom and doom of the previous days dissipated like smoke on a windy day.
Shortly before the Sun sank below the horizon, everyone gathered outside the Main Hall,and everything was prepared for there entry inside. 
The Wise One stood  outside between the crowd and the Sun and raised her arms in salute and called out, "Great Lord, Giver of Life, We have not forgotten the nor shall we ever, Tonight a remnant of your mighty Self will burn here fueled by our hopes and wishes for your return until you come to us once more!  May the magick of Love, the gift of the Mother bring you back to us!"
As the last twinkling of the sun rimmed the edge of the mountain, she seemed to touch it with her torch and it burst into flame.  Carrying her flaming torch before her she entered the Main Hall and all followed her.
Standing before the crowd at the Hearth, she commanded them, "Clear your minds and hearts from doubt! Focus your love on those with you and rejoice in their being!  Look at all the work you have done together to bring this gathering into being and compare it to how you were all separated and frightened only one day ago!  See the magick we have wrought from Life and Love and concentrate all your best and strongest hopes together and transfer it to this magnificent gift we have made for the Sun!  To send all that strength to Him we will all lay hands upon it and bless it now"
Each family in turn approached the Log that had been adorned so beautifully and with each touching, it pulsed even more intensely with a magickal energy until it was fairly sparking and crackling before the Wise one came near it with her Torch.
She raised the torch high above her head and called out to the heavens, "Return to us and receive this gift of love we offer you Lord, and Bless us, we pray with the gift of your Light, Warmth, Presence, and Gift of Life!!!!"
She lowered the torch to the log and it burst into flame with sparks rising through the smoke hole like stars toward the gods, each carrying the love of each villager to the Sun.
The Wise one then set about to lighting all the candles with the torch that head benn lit by the last rays of the setting sun.
The villagers all set about feasting and spent the night together in fellowship , telling tales of good memories and making sure each knew how much they were cherished by the other.
The night was long in hours, but seemed shorter than the dark times they had spent huddled in fear. The warmth of the Log and the company created a atmosphere of such good will, the scents of the food and spices and perfumes and wine all mixed together in harmony and bliss. It truly was a magickal gift, this gift of Love.
As eyes were tired and bellies full, children napped and noise abated, Niall ventured to go outside to answer the call of nature, and when he did, he was surprized to see the dawn was breaking!
"Everyone!!! Come!!! Look!!"
The villagers roused from their encroaching slumber and rushed to the door. Indeed, the Sun was breaking over the eastern horizon a little earlier than it had the day before! The whole village cheered!!
The Log was nearly spent, and the wise one drew a remnant of it aside. She knew the amazing magick this Log had embodied, and thought it best to keep a bit of it for future use as the wheel of the year turned this way again.
The village rejoiced each day for 12 days as the sun indeed rose ealier and set later and the days grew longer.
Each year after that, A Wise One would begin the fire of the Yule Log with the remnants of the last Yule log, keeping the magick of that first one flowing through it in addition to the new love and magick added each year by all the villagers, including Niall and Finnola's son, and grand children and great grandchildren, and each year, although the Sun continued to return, they never took for granted that it would.
Blessed Yule
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